Just got back from a fabulous weekend in North Wales- one of my favourite parts of the country but unfortunately just that little bit too far away for a regular visit.
This visit had a theme - as many stone circles and tombs as possible in 2 days of hill walking.
First morning dawned grey and misty. It was very late when we drove up the night before after a full day at work so it was a chance to see where we were and to decide what we wanted to go. The weather although good for Wales, wasn't good enough to go high. I don't enjoy having rain flung in my face or winds trying to dislodge me especially if the view is obscured by cloud so it was a lower level walk today.
Capel Gamon is a small village just above Betws y Coed. The pub is sadly closed and up for sale but plenty of parking nearby.
The tomb is a chambered cairn dating originally from neolithic times but with the finding of some beaker pottery it could have been in use until the early bronze age.
The layout is similar to that of Belas Knapp in the Cotswolds and has stunning views- they certainly knew how to site a tomb. You can just about see the circle of rocks marking the perimeter of the mound.
The site was "guarded" by a very friendly farm dog who insisted on a nice game of sticks before deciding he was going to escort us along our way. If in doubt we followed the dog who led us on to a neighbouring farm before taking himself back home.
At this point things started to get rather surreal. We hadn't gone more than a mile or so when we were joined by another dog. I have no idea where he came from and he started off in the direction we were headed. As it happened we'd made a mistake so we back tracked a few hundred yards and took a second path. Within half a mile the dog had rejoined us - taking the lead and looking back to make sure we were still following.
At this point the old tales of the Cŵn Annwn started to flit uncomfortably across my mind. Not much we could do about it so it was again a case of follow the dog! We dawdled a bit as I was collecting lichen for dyeing and the dog started barking to hurry us up. Eventually we got to the bottom of the hillside on the main road above Fairy Glen and the dog vanished as suddenly as he had appeared.
There are lots of tales of strange happenings in the woods above Betws and it seems I now have my own tale to tell. The rest of the walk was uneventful if rather wet and boggy in places and despite ( because of?) the mysterious dog we returned safely to our guest house for a well earned cup of tea